News for June

Summer is coming, to the eternal joy of children (and adults) everywhere. There’s much to look forward to: long days at the beach, trips to the park, picnics, barbecues and all manner of outdoor delights, not to mention that there are soon to be ‘no more pencils, no more books, no more teachers’ dirty looks!’ But let me be the first to own to this unpopular opinion: Summer is a jerk.

Ludicrous, I know, but hear me out.

I’ll admit that I enjoy the warm temperatures, but I can’t abide the hot, sticky mugginess that is Southwestern Ontario. And while sunshine is admittedly cheerful and chock full of vitamin D, my lily white, Day-Glo skin is helpless against it, leaving me in freckled, sunburned misery—and that’s with my constant companion, good ol’ SPF 65. And the bugs—oh, don’t get me started on the bugs. The oft-maligned mosquito is my particular nemesis; any bite that I am unlucky enough to attract below the waist immediately swells up to mammoth proportions. Need I speak of the horrors of sitting in a chair when the bite on your upper right thigh has swollen to the size of hamburger and itches like the dickens? I think not.

The mosquito. Jokingly referred to as Canada's national bird. Also proof-positive that Mother Nature is kind of a bitch.

The mosquito. Jokingly referred to as Canada’s national bird. Also proof-positive that Mother Nature is kind of a bitch.

Summer offers the irresistible temptation of enjoying the natural world, but like a playground bully, mercilessly punishes you for it. Alas, my willpower is weak. Though I may be tempted to stay inside, in blissful air-conditioned comfort, I can’t help myself from playing the occasional tennis match or enjoying lazy afternoons by the pool. And you can bet I’ll be outside with a book every chance I get, enjoying the flowers, my slowly-but-surely-growing vegetable garden, and the cool breeze on the patio until … dammit. Sunburned again.

Summer is a jerk.

(Pst. If you’re looking for some good outdoor reading, don’t miss this list of great books about nature.)


What’s happening this month…


A little bit of vacation time! After a crazy couple of months, we’ll be having a bit of a printing and production break in June. But not to worry—yours truly will still be around to keep you all company!

In Toronto.

So many events, so little time! Niki Koulouris will be at the Rowers Reading Series reading from The sea with no one in it on June 1. Then it’s off to Blue Coffee on June 15th and the Riverdale Public Library on June 20th.

Want music? We have music: Lotería Jarocha author Alec Dempster will be performing at Lula Lounge’s Canadá le canta a México event on June 4th.

If poetry is more your style, Shane Neilson will launch the very intense and just plain brilliant On Shaving Off His Face at The Steady on June 8th. All are welcome!

In Stratford.

Gerard Brender à Brandis and Marianne Brandis will be hosting a two-day book signing for The Grand River: Dundalk to Lake Erie. Join them at Gerard’s studio (called “An Artist’s Cottage”) on June 27th.

In the world.

June 1st is Dare Day! We DARE you to check out our Spring 2015 list (if you haven’t already).

For the literary minded, June 16th is Bloomsday, celebrated in honour of June 16th, 1904, the day depicted in James Joyce’s Ulysses. (Learn more here.)

And so you don’t forget, this is your friendly reminder that June 21st is Father’s Day. Be sure to say hi to Dad! Surprise him with a book perhaps… (Too obvious? *ahem* Sorry.)


From the porcupette’s corner…

And what has this porcupette been up to? Well, after a lovely Victoria Day holiday in the pool, I’ve occupied myself with a little of this and a little of that. Lately some promotional work has been bearing fruit. Might I suggest checking out Shane Neilson’s book launch? *wink wink, nudge nudge*

I’m also quite excited about the newly available digital version of The Grand River. As you may know, the print version has been available for a while, but the complexities of fold outs and pagination and so forth made making a digital version quite the challenge. Luckily, our fearless leader Tim figured out how to make it all work, so I’ve been happily uploading it to our various online vendors. If you’d like to snag yourself a copy, may I recommend the eStore?


portraitWhat’s next on the docket? Possibly some EPUB style ebooks. (This is me jumping up and down in undisguised glee!) But more on that next time.


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The Porcupine's Quill would like to acknowledge the support of the Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts for our publishing program. The financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Book Fund (CBF) is also gratefully acknowledged.